Bible Commentaries
Psalms 102

Peake's Commentary on the BiblePeake's Commentary

Verses 1-28

CII. The title, which is unique in the Psalter, describes the contents of Psalms 102:1-11 very well. So far the Ps. is the prayer of a man in extreme affliction. The same may be said of Psalms 102:23 and Psalms 102:24 a. But the theme which occupies the rest of the Ps. is quite different and indeed contrary. The poet turns to the eternal life of Yahweh. He has already “ built up Zion” : His glory has appeared: not only the Jews but other peoples and kingdoms are to serve Yahweh. We may try to evade this difficulty by treating the perfect verbs as futures of prophetic certainty. Thus in Psalms 102:16 the translation would be “ Yahweh shall build up Zion” : and so in other cases. This explanation may be right. It is, however, more probable that Psalms 102:1-11 is the prayer of an individual sufferer; that a later poet misunderstood the meaning and took the sufferer to be Israel personified, and then appended new verses to the older poem, predicting Israel’ s glory and the advent of the Messianic age. Thus the Ps. was adapted to Temple use. It bears no mark of date except that Psalms 102:2 agrees almost verbally with Psalms 69:17. Now Psalms 69 is certainly Maccabean, and as the Ps. before us is full of thoughts which are reminiscences of other Pss., of Job and Is., and has little or no originality, it is probably later than Psalms 69.

Psalms 102:5 . Emend, “ My flesh cleaves to my bones.” An emaciated man does look as if his flesh was drawn tight to his bones. In the case of every man the bones cleave to the flesh.

Psalms 102:6 . pelican: what bird is meant is not known.

Psalms 102:8 . “ do curse by me” (see Jeremiah 29:22).

Bibliographical Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Psalms 102". "Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". 1919.